Love/Hate Othello

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  • Topic: Love, Hatred, Hate
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Love and Hate
Two Sides of the Same Coin

In love comes an exponentially vast array of emotions that can all show themselves at one time or another. One of those emotions that comes with love is hatred. Walter Raleigh once said, “Hatreds are the cinders of affection.” If you can find feelings of hate towards someone you love, it is because you truly love them. This is why Othello has so much hate towards Desdemona in act III.

In act III, Iago plants the thought in Othello’s head that his wife, Desdemona, is having an affair with Cassio. Iago acts reluctant to answer Othello when he asks him if he feels Cassio is trustworthy, but it is all a performance put on to get in Othello’s head. Thoughts race through Othello’s head on why Desdemona would ever cheat on him, bringing out his deepest insecurities. Haply for I am black,

And have not those soft parts of conversation
That chamberers have; or for I am declined
Into the vale of years—yet that’s not much—
She’s gone. I am abused, and my relief
Must be to loathe her. O curse of marriage,
That we can call these delicate creatures ours
And not their appetites! I had rather be a toad
And live upon the vapor of a dungeon
Than keep a corner in the thing I love
For others’ uses. Yet ’tis the plague of great ones;
Prerogatived are they less than the base.
’Tis destiny unshunnable, like death. (III.iii.267–279)

The thought of these self proclaimed “flaws” makes him bring up feelings of anger and hatred, making him question if Desdemona ever truly loved him or lied to him all along.

However, deep down, he still has nothing but love for her.

Othello only wants to kill Desdemona and not Cassio because he feels as if she betrayed him. There was never any real relationship between Cassio and Othello aside from the military, so he doesn’t feel the same hatred towards him as with Desdemona. Othello feels that if he is not worthy to be with Desdemona, then nobody is. He loves her so much that he...
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